CANADA: Chamberlain's Folly

For nearly 40 years, a gaunt oil derrick rusted on a hilltop east of Edmonton, a landmark known the country round as "Chamberlain's Folly." While digging for water on his farm in 1911, William Chamberlain had hit a pocket of natural gas and got a hunch that there might be oil on his land. He sank his savings in an oil rig, the first rotary drill ever used in Alberta. The money ran out when the well was down 2,000 feet, with no sight of oil. Discouraged, Chamberlain went back to farming.

Although his abandoned oil rig became a joke...

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